The Review notes that PM Theresa May said on the steps of 10 Downing Street, “If you’re black you’re treated more harshly by the criminal justice system than if you are white.” It tactfully does not mention the fact that her Government has done nothing notable to redress the situation. But perhaps they’ve been waiting for this review before taking action!
The number of young BAME offenders continues to rise each year; so too does their proportion in comparison with white offenders. The review commends the “deferred prosecution” model pioneered in Birmingham showing a significant success rate. It makes a number of other recommendations that need to be noted by Government and all those involved in the prison service and justice system.
MJR Chair Revd Alton Bell, welcomed the report, and said: “This clearly is a valuable report which underlines many of the issues that have been emphasised by the Movement for Justice and Reconciliation (MJR) and others working in the community.”
Aspects of the report underline our contention that there is a legacy of slavery still existing in Britain today. Until the reality of this legacy is recognised and confronted, the institutional injustices suffered by black children of Caribbean descent will continue to exist. There are many positive things that can be done to address the situation, but so long it is swept under the carpet, no progress will be made.
MJR is having its Annual Meeting today, 11 September 2017, when reports will be given of latest research concerning the legacy of slavery which is to be seen in health factors as well as in issues of education which affect BAME young people disproportionately. News will also be given of plans by MJR for further activities in coming years to alert the nation and specific localities to the extent of the colonial slave trade in this country and its legacy. Details of MJR activities can be obtained from: firstname.lastname@example.org